Berchemia Lineata

Botanical Name : Berchemia lineata
Family : Rhamnaceae
Genus: Berchemia

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Rosales
Species: B. lineata
Synonyms : Berchemia axilliflora – Cheng.,Berchemia edgeworthii – Lawson.,Berchemia nana – W.W.Smith.,Rhamnus lineatus – L.
Habitat:Range E. Asia – C. and N. China to the Himalayas.It occurs naturally in dry thickets in the rainshadows of the central Asian mountains. B. lineata is found from northern China to Nepal, but is also cultivated in gardens. On rocks and in forests, 2000 – 2700 metres in the Himalayas. Scrub thickets in dry places at elevations of 2400 – 4000 metres in Nepal.Hills, open places, roadsides; low elevations. Fujian, Guangdong, Guangxi, Hainan, Taiwan [India, Japan, Vietnam].

Description:
A decidious Climber growing to 4m tall. Shrubs, prostrate or procumbent. Branchlets yellow-green, densely pubescent; older branches glabrescent. Stipules remarkable, reddish, lanceolate, 3-5 mm, persistent; petiole 1-3 mm, pubescent; leaf blade abaxially greenish and with minute dark pits, adaxially dark green, broadly elliptic or oblong-ovate, 5-20 × 4-12 mm, papery, both surfaces glabrous, lateral veins 4-6 pairs, base rounded, apex rounded or obtuse, with a mucro 1-2 mm, often slightly emarginate. Flowers white, very small, 4-5 mm in diam., in terminal cymose racemes or in fascicles of few to 10 in leaf axils. Pedicel 2.5-4 mm, glabrous. Calyx tube campanulate; lobes triangular-lanceolate, ca. 1.5 mm. Petals lanceolate, ca. 2.5 mm. Stamens slightly longer than petals, with very thin, flat filaments. Drupe yellowish green when young, dark blue and waxy at maturity, globose to ovoid to ellipsoid, 5-6 mm, to 3 mm in diam., with persistent disk and calyx tube at base; fruiting pedicel 4.5-5 mm, pilose. Fl. Jul-Oct, fr. Nov.
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The roots and leaves are used medicinally for relieving coughs and reducing sputum and for treating injuries, trauma, and snakebites.

It is hardy to zone 8. It is in flower from July to August, and the seeds ripen in November. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs)
The plant prefers light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It requires moist soil.

Cultivation
Requires a good moist well-drained loam, succeeding in full sun if the soil does not dry out otherwise it is best in light shade. This species is not hardy in the colder areas of the country, it tolerates temperatures down to between -5 and -10°c. Suitable for growing along fences, against walls with wire supports or for growing through other shrubs. Plants climb by means of twining around supports. Closely related to B. edgeworthii.

Propagation

Seed – sow spring or autumn in a cold frame. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, July/August in a frame. Cuttings of mature wood of the current season’s growth, November to January in a frame. Root cuttings in winter[200]. Layering of young stems in winter

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Edible Uses
Edible Parts: Fruit.

Fruit. – raw or cooked. Only eat the fruit when it is black ripe. The fruit is not very freely produced in Britain[1]. The fruit is about 8mm in diameter.

Medicinal Actions & Uses:-
Antitussive; Febrifuge.

The plant has been used as a febrifuge. The roots and leaves have been used as a medicine to relieve coughs and reduce sputum, to treat injuries, trauma and snakebite.

Disclaimer:The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider

Resources:
http://www.pfaf.org/database/plants.php?Berchemia+lineata
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Berchemia_lineata
http://www.efloras.org/florataxon.aspx?flora_id=620&taxon_id=200013327

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